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Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Norfolk Island

Home > Norfolk Island > Animals and Wildlife | Parks | Travel | Walks
by Cris (subscribe)
I am an Organiser of the Group Hiking South East Qld and More on Meetup. Visit the website at https://www.meetup.com/HikingInSEQLDandMore/ is free to join all the activities posted on the hiking group.
Published April 18th 2021
A beautiful peaceful walk through nature
The walking trail is located in 100 Acres Reserve on the south-west of the island, on Headstone Road, opposite the magnificent Moreton Bay fig trees. In the past, the reserve area was called Rocky Point Reserve.

The walking track and boardwalk take you inside peaceful forests of coastal Norfolk pine and white oak tree and along breathtaking cliffs.

Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton birds (also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropicbirds (Phaethon rubricauda) nest on the cliff edges, while white terns (Gygis alba) in the surrounding trees.

Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees,
The imposing buttress of the Moreton Bay fig. Photo by Terry Brown.


Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees, White oak (Lagunaria patersonia)
Photo by Author.



Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees,
Photo by Author.


Hundred Acres trail is a loop, with some steep sections. It is 2.3 km long, allow one hour. The walk is relatively easy. Hiking boots are recommended. There are no snakes on the island! Tracks may be uneven and slippery especially after rain.

Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees,
The gate marks the entrance to the One Hundred Acres Walk. Photo by Author.


Bring a medium day backpack with 1 litre of water and snacks. Long sleeves and long trousers are preferable. Put in your backpack first aid kit, insect repellent in form of cream; please avoid the spray since the aerosol created during the spray is going to spread in the environment. Pack a raincoat, torch, tissues and phone. Wear hiking boots or hiking shoes and make sure they are clean.

Hike with your family, friends or in a group. Never alone!

Stay on the trail all the time to avoid disturbing nesting birds and step on the mutton birds holes.

Along the trail a sign with information says:

"First cleared and farmed during the Colonial Settlement (1788-1814), Hundred Acres Reserve is named after One Hundred Acre farm established in this area during the Second Colonial Penal Settlement (1825-1855).

The area was originally reserved in the 1800s and it is shown on the 1904 Map of Norfolk Island Shewing Grants and Subdivisions.

Hundred Acres Reserve contains the largest area of coastal pine and white oak forest left on the island. This unique forest harbors a variety of threatened endemic species, including the worlds tallest tree -fern and a small terrestrial snail which is now not found anywhere else".

The trail meanders through the forest which offers different underlay, from baby pines to grass and dirt.

Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees,
Pastel colour grass under the trees. Photo by Author.


Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees, White oak (Lagunaria patersonia)
Small pine trees under adult trees and dirt. Photo by Author.


The white oak is very common in Norfolk Island. It can grow to more than 20 meters high. Its pink and mauve coloured flowers are beautiful and tend to fade with age.

Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees, White oak (Lagunaria patersonia)
The beautiful flowers of the white oak. Photo by Author.


During WWII, Rocky Point was a strategic observation post. The troops constructed small dugouts and trenches. Today the area is very peaceful and is a great place for bird watchers and nature lovers.

Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees,
Boardwalk overlooking the stunning coastline. Photo by Author.


Rocky Point is a great place to watch seabirds as they fly in the sky scanning the sea for food. Pairs of red tailed tropicbirds can be seen performing their spectacular aerial display above the cliffs circling repeatedly one over the other, then each flying up into the wind to float backwards over its mate.

Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees, White oak (Lagunaria patersonia)
The beautiful red tailed tropicbird looking after its egg. A diet rich in certain seafood give the streaks of mauve on the feathers. Photo by Author.


Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees, White oak (Lagunaria patersonia)
Photo by Author.


Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees,
Photo by Author.


Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees, White oak (Lagunaria patersonia)
On the horizon is Phillip Island and on the left is Nepean Island. Photo by Author.


Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees, White oak (Lagunaria patersonia)
The exquisite flowers of the white oak blooming directly from the bark. Photo by Author.


Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees,
More spectacular sceneries along One Hundred Acres Reserve. Photo by Author.


Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees, White oak (Lagunaria patersonia)
Photo by Author.



From the Author

I spent about a week in Norfolk Island at the beginning of December 2020. I organised the trip to the island with my hiking group. We were a total of 14 people travelling to explore Norfolk Island. The plan was to do some activities together as a group and do some activities independently.

The afternoon of the third day on the island, Terry and myself decided to walk Hundred Acres Reserve Walk. It was an extraordinary walk with many highlights, like the birds, the lookouts on the oceans, the majestic trees and the flowers.

In particular, I remembered when walking in the forest suddenly I realise I could hear a noise. The noise apparently was coming from a tree and I decided to investigate. The tree was not alive anymore but it was colonised by insects and all their intense activities and movements produced a humming noise. I never heard before the noise made by insects living inside an old tree. The insects were probably ants or termites.

Everything was beautiful and tranquil on the trail. It was easy to take photos of the red tailed tropicbirds since they would just stay on their egg. It is also an experience watch the red tailed tropic birds to land and to take off. When they land, they have to be careful to go as close as possible to the nest.

They drag themselves on the ground since their legs are so much further back. They are very well adapted in flying over the sea being real seabirds. They spend their life flying and gliding over the ocean.

Sea birds manage to sleep only for a few seconds or only half of their brain goes asleep.

Taking off is also an effort for the real seabirds since they drag themselves out of the nest and then they flap vigorously their wings and lift themselves in a helicopter mode.


Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees,
The entry of the burrow of the mutton bird. These birds dig quite a long tunnel where the chick is left all day. Great care needed to be taken in order to avoid stepping on the burrows. The parents fly all day long above the sea and catching food. They return to their burrows after the sunset. Photo by Author.


Just opposite the trailhead, standing in rows in Headstone Road, are the Pantagruel size Moreton Bay fig trees. They are probably more than 200 years old - these huge trees are a great spot for a stopover and taking photos.

The massive canopies cast a great shade but the root system is fascinating, tall or more than a person.

Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees,
The majsestic Moreton Bay fig trees. Photo by Terry Brown.


Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees, White oak (Lagunaria patersonia)
Photo by Terry Brown.


Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees, White oak (Lagunaria patersonia)
Photo by Author.




You can also take food and a bottle of wine with you and enjoy the sweeping views from the trail.

Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees,
View from the trail. Photo by Author.



Norfolk Island Pine

This magnificent tree (Araucaria heterophylla) is a native of Norfolk Island and it is the emblem of the Country. It can grow as tall as 60 m and reach 3 m in diameter. It is cultivated around the world as an ornamental tree, the wood has a different use in construction, shipbuilding and craft.

The Norfolk Island pine was discovered on the second expedition of Capt. James Cook (1772–75) and was introduced to cultivation shortly thereafter.

Norfolk Island Pine is everywhere on the island and the seeds are a great food for the endangered green parrot.

Norfolk Island, Hundred Acres Reserve Walk, Masked booby (Sula dactylatra), mutton Birds ( also called Short-tailed shearwater), red tailed tropic Birds (Phaethon rubricauda), White terns (Gygis alba), Moreton bay fig trees,
A pastel landscape on Norfolk. Photo by Author.
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Where: Headstone Road opposite the Moreton Bay fig trees, in the south west part of the island.
Your Comment
Great article and photos Cris. Your article shows there is a lot more to Norfolk Island that just the old convict settlement shown in all the tourist brochures. The walk looks magnificent and relative easy.
by Neil Follett (score: 3|3298) 256 days ago
I've always wanted to visit Norfolk Island. You have shared many reasons why it's on my must do list.
by Gillian Ching (score: 3|3594) 256 days ago
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